S. Douglas Bunch
U.S. Public Delegate
New York, New York
October 31, 2022
Thank you. We recognize the pivotal role of the Working Group, and we appreciate this opportunity to underscore our commitment to achieving racial equity and justice for people of African descent in the United States and globally.
We share your concerns regarding the myriad challenges and vulnerabilities facing people of African descent, such as the disproportionate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, health disparities, unequal access to education, social exclusion, hate-based violence, insufficient access to clean water, food insecurity, economic inequity, housing instability, and environmental crises, and we call for renewed action to comprehensively address these critical issues.
Advancing racial equity and justice is a top priority for the Biden-Harris Administration, as demonstrated by efforts to advance racial equity and support for underserved communities, enhance economic opportunity for Black communities, narrow the racial wealth gap, ensure equitable educational opportunity including increased investments in the nation’s historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs), improve health outcomes for Black communities, ensure equal access to justice, enhance voting access, and advance environmental justice.
The Secretary of State appointed the Department of State’s first Special Representative for Racial Equity and Justice to advance the human rights of members of marginalized racial and ethnic communities, including Indigenous communities, and combat systemic racism, discrimination, violence, and xenophobia around the world.
We look forward to ongoing and meaningful dialogue and engagement with your Working Group and through our support to the Permanent Forum on People of African Descent.
Our question is: How can States support the Working Group’s collaboration with civil society to address critical issues that impact people of African descent?